‘African leaders must have required credibility to govern’ – Goodluck Jonathan

Former Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan. Photo credit: Africanews

Former Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan says the continent is mature for democracy. He however concedes that there remain some grey areas in its democratic experiment.

Jonathan was speaking at the 20th Anniversary Symposium of the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISA) in Johannesburg, South Africa.

‘‘Africa is indeed ripe for democracy, despite a few remaining grey areas and I trust that with EISA and others we will reach the promise land.

‘‘African leaders must ensure that their Elections Management Bodies are truly independent to allow credible elections,’‘ he added.

He also bemoaned the struggles that the Africa goes through to elect its leaders adding that for the continent to develop, ‘‘we must foster free, fair and credible elections. Our leaders must have the required credibility to govern.’‘

Jonathan who lost the 2015 presidential election in Nigeria to incumbent Muhammadu Buhari is seen as one of the leading lights in democratic transition on the continent. He conceded and peacefully handed over power to Buhari after keenly contested polls.

He also lauded the EISA stating that as the continent’s democratic space continued to open up, institutions like the EISA were critical in achieving a fully democratic Africa.